Tuesday’s Tip: Using Melt to automate video editing.

Melt is a program that lets you script video splicing, and basic editing. It can be a pain to get to know, but once you do, it’s pretty awesome. Here is a simple example.

We have a number of short walkthroughs. They are all pretty similar. A Quick intro, the screen cast, and then an outro. Here is how you setup melt to do this for you.

First, you need to install “Shotcut” (http://www.shotcut.org/) on your Mac / PC. Shotcut is a front end for Melt, and includes the melt program. It’s alot like Adobe Premier Elements, but it’s free and opensource.

Now, go ahead and create a “Video Template” folder on your computer.

Now in that folder, create a file called “render.melt”, in that file put the following lines:

C:\Users\joey\Videos\intro.mpg
-attach-cut
volume:-8db
screen.webm
C:\Users\joey\Videos\intro.mpg
-attach-cut
volume:-8db

This file tells melt to start with the video located here: C:\Users\joey\Videos\intro.mpg, to lower the volume by 8db for that video, then add the video called “screen.webm”, then add the intro.mpg video to the end of that, and reduce the volume by 8db.

Note** You MUST have a blank line at the end of your melt file.

Change the video filenames (C:\Users\joey\Videos\intro.mpg, and screen.webm) to the paths to your intro, and main content piece.

Now, you need a script file (batch if you are on windows, bash if you are on Mac).

For windows, I put the following in the batch file (I call the file render.cmd).

"C:\Program Files\Shotcut\melt" render.melt -consumer avformat:final.avi acodec=libmp3lame vcodec=libx264

This tells melt to use your render.melt file, and output the video to a file called final.avi using the libx264 codec.

I put all this in my “VideoTemplate” directory, and anytime I need to make a new video, I copy the directory, put my new screencast video into the directory and name it “screen.webm”, then I just double click on the script file, and melt does the rest. Then upload final.avi to YouTube.

btw… I use the Screencastify chrome plugin to capture the screencast.

1 Comment

  1. This is HUGE! I just tried this out myself, and was so encouraged to see that it worked!

    Reply

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